Who Does Francesca Bridgerton End Up With?

Is it John Stirling or Lord Samadani—or someone else entirely?
violet, francesca and hyacinth bridgerton in the netflix series
Image: Netflix

Part one of Bridgerton season three left us on a bit of a cliff hanger—and we’re not talking about that carriage scene with Colin Bridgerton and Penelope Featherington.

Rather, we’re referring to the state of little sister, Francesca Bridgerton’s love life.

After Queen Charlotte titled her “sparkling” and introduced her to Viennese hunk Lord Samadani, it seemed the fate of who Francesca would end up with was sealed. However, when the quiet John Stirling, Earl of Kilmartin comes into her life, the door to an alternate romance appears to open.

For the spoiler-lovers among us who simply can’t wait for part two to find out what happens, we’re in luck. Netflix’s Bridgerton is based on a series of novels by Julia Quinn. While showrunners have deviated from the arcs of the books at times, for the most part, the key plot points remain true.

The second-youngest Bridgerton sister is at the centre of book number six, When He Was Wicked, so we can look there for some hints as to who she might end up with on the show. And just a warning, the ending might surprise you.

Image: Netflix

Do Francesca & John End Up Together In the Bridgerton Books?

While Francesca stars in book number six, her love story is peppered throughout the preceding novels.

Unlike in the series, where we are witness to its early stages, her and John’s romance actually plays out away from the pages, between books three and four.

When He Was Wicked kicks off with the pair married and living in Scotland as Earl and Countess of Kilmartin.

However, tragedy strikes just ahead of the pair’s second wedding anniversary, when John dies from a ruptured cerebral aneurysm.

Image: Liam Daniel / Netflix

So, Who Does Francesca Marry?

In the books, Francesca is left a widow following John’s untimely death.

Throughout the story, she and John are shown to be incredibly close to John’s cousin Michael. In the book, readers learn that Michael has long held feelings for Francesca but chose to suppress them.

However, Francesca and Michael form an even deeper bond after John’s death, united by their mutual grief. In order to avoid confronting his feelings for his cousin’s widow, Michael then flees to India for four years, and Francesca is left to manage to Kilmartin estate.

Michael returns to the United Kingdom around the same time Francesca decides she wants to remarry, and the pair quickly go from friends to lovers. They go on to marry and have two children together.

Will the Series Stay True To the Bridgerton Books?

While the Bridgerton series does take some creative liberty, it seems as though parts of Francesca’s story will remain true.

However, the season three finale introduced us to John’s cousin—but the show’s creators had opted to flip their gender. In Michael’s place, we met Michaela Stirling, played by Masali Baduza.

Image: Netflix

Showrunner Jess Brownell recently told Deadline she has “been pitching the Francesca queer story from the beginning.”

“When I read her book, I, as a queer woman, really related to her book. Maybe in a way Julia Quinn didn’t intend, but a lot of Francesca’s book is about feeling different from her family and from the world around her and not really knowing why,” she told the outlet. “In the book, I think it’s mostly just about being introverted. But I think for a lot of queer people, not every queer person, but a lot of queer people, that sense of feeling different from the time you’re young, is part of our stories. So it felt like a natural one to gender bend.”

So it looks like we could get a similar storyline to the books, however, with Michaela instead of Michael.

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